- Churches, synagogues, mosques & all other youth-serving institutions
This petition is not meant to disparage any religion in any way. Rather, its purpose is to call for major changes to end child abuse caused or facilitated by inadequate safety policies.
Scandal after scandal of child abuse continues to pervade the news. From the Mormons to the Baptists to the Catholics to the Jehovah Witnesses to pretty much every denomination, it seems that children are not safe.
Enough is enough. Rather than simply reading of the horrors perpetrated on children and then just shaking our heads, we are going to flex our collective vocal muscles. From the very mountain tops we will shout a message of protection for our children. We can't prevent what happened in the past. We WILL protect our precious kids going forward.
This petition is the first of a series of actions that will be launched in 2019. Here is our four point action plan.
Action 1: Petition
This petition calls for all parents as well as all religions, denominations and youth serving organizations to Protect Every Child. The goal is to gather 50,000 signatures.
Action 2: Climb a Mountain, Save a Child
We encourage you to summit a mountain, a hill, a driveway or any point of prominence. Whether big or small. Unfurl a banner on that driveway or mountain top. Take a picture. Then share it everywhere.
This year, hundreds of banners will be planted on pinnacles all around the world. The flags are not to be left behind. Rather, they are to be brought home for a subsequent action.
A lovely carol is sung during the Christmas season--Go Tell It On A Mountain. If ever there was a message to shout from the mountain tops, this is it. PROTECT EVERY CHILD.
Action 3: 12 Days of Ascension--July 24 to August 4, 2019
Last summer, a 23 day hunger strike was conducted in the shadow of the Salt Lake Temple. This summer, we'll return to Utah for 12 days, Not to fast...to climb. Peaks will be summitted around the valley. Others will climb mountains across the country. Banners will be unfurled for the entire world to see.
Each evening, a mountain-side chat will be broadcast. Flags carried down from the mountain tops will be on display. Discussions will be held with survivors and supporters. Religious leaders will be invited to share their child safety practices.
During last summer's hunger strike, over 500,000 social media views were registered. This year we will raise that awareness to millions.
Action 4: The Children's March!! Oct 5, 2019
Last spring, a rally and march were held in Salt Lake City. Its culmination was the delivery of the petition to the top Mormon leadership. Books were also presented that contained hundreds of stories of harm done behind closed doors.
It was a magical experience. Healing of childhood wounds. Awareness raised. A thousand people joined together in a common and noble cause. Giving voice to the voiceless. Standing up to protect the vulnerable. Recognizing, validating and soothing the deep hurt still lodged in the broken hearts of adults who were abused as kids.
October 5, 2019, a second march will be held in the streets of Salt Lake City. The banners that have been planted at the tops of the world and at the end of driveways will be publicly unfurled and proudly waved. Huge awareness will be spread of the abuse our children have endured and what MUST be done to prevent it in the future.
This will be an historic event. In 2018, one thousand marchers peacefully walked the streets of Salt Lake. Our goal for 2019 is 5,000 participants. Join us for this experience of a lifetime. Come...march...and Protect Every Child.
WE CALL on churches, synagogues, mosques and all other youth serving organizations to adopt policies and practices that will insure the safety of children frequenting your institutions.
Following are the minimum requirements of protection.
1. No one-on-one interaction between adults and children. That includes ecclesiastical leaders. Children should never be taken behind closed doors without at least 2 adults present.
2. No one-on-one communication via technology between unrelated adults and children.
3. No private discussions initiated by adults relating to sex or sexual activity.
4. For all adults who work with children:
a) Criminal background checks.
b) Re-verify criminal background checks at least every 3 years.
c) Professional training on youth protection.
d) Renew youth protection training at least every 2 years.
5. Child protection policies are to be posted publicly and given to all parents. Parents and leaders/volunteers working with children are to be trained annually on these policies.
6. Establish a complaint process for reporting policies not being observed or leaders acting in ways that are not consistent with child protection responsibilities. This process should be independent of the organization's leadership.
7. All institutions must act in accordance with government laws of reporting child abuse or suspicion of child abuse.
8) Institutions are to have an independent process to evaluate how well the institution is following the policies.
WE CALL on parents: Require institutions where your children participate to implement strong child protection policies. At a minimum, those listed above.
WE CALL on all levels of government to enact measures that will halt the epidemic of child abuse.
The Enough is Enough--Protect Every Child petition to Churches, synagogues, mosques & all other youth-serving institutions was written by Sam Young and is in the category Human Rights at GoPetition.